Science & Technology Current Affairs - 2019
Science & Technology Current Affairs 2019-2020 category comprises current affairs with all important national / international updates in science and tech and events for the year 2019-2020 for UPSC, States, Civil services, SSC and other competitive examinations of India and States.
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NASA has announced that SpaceX will fly its Double Asteroid Redirection Test (DART) planetary-defence mission. The total launch cost for NASA is estimated to be about $69 million.
Double Asteroid Redirection Test (DART) is a planned space probe that will demonstrate the kinetic effects of crashing an impactor spacecraft into an asteroid moon for planetary defense purposes. The mission is intended to test whether a spacecraft impact could successfully deflect an asteroid on a collision course with Earth.
DART Planetary-Defense Mission
- DART planetary-defence mission will be will launched by the Falcon 9 rocket from Vandenberg Air Force Base in California in June 2021.
- The spacecraft will slam into “Didymoon,” the 540-foot-wide (165 meters) satellite of the near-Earth asteroid Didymos which is located at about 4 million miles from Eart in October 2022.
- Scientists will observe the impact with telescopes and measure the change in the Didymoon’s orbit around the asteroid.
- Scientists hope to move it by just a fraction of a per cent off its path, which is enough to deflect any future asteroids off course since Didymos poses no threat to Earth.
DART won’t be the first spacecraft to wallop an asteroid. Earlier this month, Japan’s Hayabusa2 probe smashed a copper cannonball into the space rock Ryugu, to unearth pristine subsurface material for study.
Tags: Asteroid-Smashing Mission • DART • Didymoon • Didymos • Double Asteroid Redirection Test
Three teams from India have won awards at the NASA’s annual Human Exploration Rover Challenge which invites high school and college students to build and test roving vehicles for future missions to the Moon, Mars and beyond.
Indian Teams Awarded
- The team from KIET Group of Institutions in Ghaziabad, Uttar Pradesh, won the “AIAA Neil Armstrong Best Design Award”, which recognises systems best designed to meet the Rover Challenge performance requirements.
- The team from Mukesh Patel School of Technology Management and Engineering from Mumbai, Maharashtra, won the “Frank Joe Sexton Memorial Pit Crew Award” for ingenuity and persistence in overcoming problems during the race as well as the “System Safety Challenge Award”.
- The team from Lovely Professional University in Phagwara, Punjab, won the “STEM Engagement Award”, presented to the team that best-informed others about rocketry and other space-related topics.
Human Exploration Rover Challenge
The annual Human Exploration Rover Challenge of NASA is an engineering design challenge to engage students worldwide in the next phase of human space exploration. The challenge evaluates the teams by mimicking the opportunities, challenges and decision-making that our future planetary explorers will face in interplanetary space.